Louisiana, Three Ways: NOLA

Homegrown, unique, and thoroughly wonderful, Louisiana has a character all its own. “[It's] is another country,” local historian Charles Chamberlain says. “But you better see it soon; who knows how long it’s going to last.” By the time Thomas Jefferson bought the land from Napoleon in that 1803 geopolitical fire sale, he explains, this French colony was well populated with French and Spanish immigrants, refugees from Haiti, and Congolese slaves, all of whom had seeded the land with their cultures, foods, and traditions. Here’s a look at New Orleans.

National Geographic Traveler Editor at Large Christopher Elliott is the magazine’s consumer advocate and ombudsman. Over the past 15 years he has helped countless readers fix their trips. Here’s his latest advice.

The Guadalupe Mountains of West Texas were once a reef growing beneath the waters of an ancient inland sea. That same vanished sea spawned the honeycomb of the Carlsbad Caverns, just 40 miles north in New Mexico. Here is Keene Haywood’s insider’s guide to this natural wonder.

Vengeful gods, terrifying sorcerers, and death-dealing demons populate the legends and beliefs of the Caribbean, which derive from a potent blend of voodoo, Catholicism, and folklore.

Among leaf scenes, New York’s is one of the best—especially upstate in the glacier-carved region known as the Finger Lakes. Here’s the scoop on visiting the region and soaking up the autumn color show.

In the 1950s, Peru’s Cabo Blanco Fishing Club was a famous rod-and-reel outpost—the world record black marlin, weighing 1,560 pounds, was caught here. Ernest Hemingway visited, along with other celebs. Now the classic coastal village and some 2,500 square miles of ocean around it could become part of a new ecotourism project—or be turned over to more oil drilling platforms.

A bodhrán player (and also a maker of the traditional drums), set dancer (a type of Irish folk dance), and bog oak sculptor, Belfast native Eamon Maguire is well versed in Irish culture. He also helps pass on these traditions as an instructor at An Droichead, an Irish language and arts school in the city. Here are a few of Eamon’s favorite things about the capital and creative hub of Northern Ireland.

#NGTRadar: Travel Lately

Travel Lately—a roundup of the best new dispatches from the travel blogosphere—is a regular feature on Intelligent Travel every other Wednesday. You can play, too. Follow us on Twitter @NatGeoTravel and tag your favorite travel stories #NGTRadar to help us find the crème de la crème on the Web. Here are our latest picks.

National Geographic Traveler contributing editor Heather Greenwood Davis is the magazine’s family travel advocate, guru, and soothsayer. Here’s her latest advice.

Blue skies prevail in Qingdao, a seaside metropolis that keeps topping livability lists in China with its inviting boardwalks, shaded streets and parks, and German colonial architecture.

Insider’s Guide to Bogotá

Change is coming rapidly to Bogotá, with the spread of European-style cuisine and lodgings—a matter of pride among Bogotanos. Yet the capital of Colombia remains resolutely local, especially in the old Candelaria neighborhood. Here are some of the highlights.

“Llama trekking seemed a perfect fit,” explains Stuart Wilde, who came to the New Mexico backcountry outside of Taos more than two decades ago. “As an outdoor educator and conservation advocate, they help me teach about minimal-impact backcountry ethics and sustainable tourism.”